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Treasure Hunt Killers

Whether you're planning a treasure hunt for an individual or for a large group, one needs to know what treasure hunt killers are and how to eliminate them. What are treasure hunt killers? They're anything that will stand in the way of you and your guests having a great time…essentially killing the fun Well, we're about to go on the attack with these killers by identifying them by name and taking them out one by one.

Snooze Locations - One can argue that a treasure hunt is all about the locations and the traveling to them. When the exact locations are such a huge component of the hunt itself, neglecting the creative use of them can make your participants fall asleep from boredom along the way. How do you elevate the creativity choices for your locations? Consider choosing places that the treasure hunters have never been before - or even better, see what you can do to include places that normally wouldn't be accessible under normal circumstances (i.e. in the attic, strangers houses (of course, someone that YOU know who is giving you permission), etc.

The Red Rose - Ahhh…the red rose. So simple, so beautiful. And yet…so cliche in some situations (but not all…I happen to love red roses.) What we're talking about here is the cliche of the "Roses are red, violets are blue" poem style for a treasure hunt. Unless your participant has never seen a treasure hunt before, this overused format could instantly elicit a groan from your treasure hunters if you try to utilize it as the 'creative portion' of your treasure hunt. There are SO many other ways to provide clues that resorting to a simple poem without considering some more unique formats might set your treasure hunt back a few pegs before your treasure hunter even gets to the first location.


The Cross Country Marathon
- You've found what you think are the absolute perfect locations for each of your treasure hunt stops. The only problem is that they are so far apart that your treasure hunters will spend most of their time traveling TO the locations instead of figuring out the locations. Remember that the fun of a treasure hunt is the creative links between the locations, not necessarily all of that driving and/or walking. Be kind to your guests.

The Break in the Chain
- A team runs up to the next location on the treasure hunt, only to find a build up of other teams stuck there trying to figure out how to progress beyond that point. What happened? The designer didn't check his/her work and created a 'hole' in the treasure hunt, leaving the participants without information on how to progress on the hunt. Perhaps a clue or map was forgotten or wrong directions were written. Any number of things can break the chain. Solution? TEST TEST TEST!

The Stumper - This little devil emerges when the one creating the treasure hunt loses track that no one likes to feel stupid. It can be a lot of fun to WATCH individuals slave over difficult to solve puzzles, but the first hand experience for the participants is worthy of some hair pulling. Remember, it's not how difficult the puzzles and clues are that makes for a 'good' treasure hunt, but rather whether or not your participants are feeling like they are overcoming challenges. As a rule of thumb, if it will slow the action down, take it out.